Known primarily as the world's second-largest producer of cocoa, Ghana is increasingly entering the coffee market. Relatively low coffee production in Ghana has made it the third-largest coffee producer in sub-Saharan Africa, behind Liberia and the Central African Republic (which produces about 600 tonnes a year).
The main variety of coffee plants grown historically in Ghana is Robusta, which is considered an inferior coffee to Arabica. This is probably a persistent problem because even at the highest points, Ghana reaches only about 400 meters above sea level - well below the over 1200 meters needed to grow the best Arabica coffees. However, Robusta coffee will flourish at lower levels.
All are affected by Ethiopia's Arabica coffee production of over 250,000 tonnes in a single harvest season (usually from October to September). The only country that has surpassed Ghana in cocoa production is the Ivory Coast, which harvests about 132,000 tons of coffee in a harvest season.
Around 2006, Ghana made efforts to double green coffee production to 3,000 metric tons and to expand the area planted to coffee to almost 5,000 acres. In 2010, the Ghana Cocoa Board (cocobod) fell again and targeted 6,000 metric tons by 2015, which it reached. Starting in 2016, President Mahama has indicated that he will work to increase production to 100,000 metric tons in the "medium-term", setting 2021 as the target date. This exponential growth requires massive investments not only in the farms themselves but also in the infrastructure to support and promote it.
This type of planned volume would put Ghana in a competitive position in the international coffee market. The selective placement of the best coffees in competitions would contribute to the recognition as a producer of being taken seriously by third-wave cafes in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia.